UK: Lady Hale delivers lecture on children in family court
Lady Hale, deputy president of the UK Supreme Court, spoke about modern developments in the involvement of children in family court proceedings in a recent major address.
Lady Hale delivered the lecture at the Association of Lawyers for Children’s annual conference in Manchester last Friday.
She told conference delegates: “It is 12 years since I last addressed the Association of Lawyers for Children. Most of my time since then has been spent on things other than family law, so you must forgive me if I am way out of touch with what really goes on. Part of my reason for being here is to find out more.
“But 12 years ago my theme was whether children should be seen but not heard. My conclusion was that they should indeed be heard and more often than they were then. So my theme today is to go back to that talk and see how much has changed over the past 12 years.”
She compared current practice with her own time in the Family Division of the High Court of Justice and spoke about the importance of balancing “the rights of all the parties, to a fair trial and to respect for their family lives”.
The full speech is available from the UK Supreme Court website.